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September is National Preparedness Month in the District

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(WASHINGTON, DC) -- September 2011 marks the 8th annual National Preparedness Month (NPM) in the District of Columbia. Sponsored by the Federal Emergency Management Agency's (FEMA) Ready Campaign in partnership with Citizen Corps, a national initiative to create opportunities for individuals to help their communities prepare for and respond to emergencies, NPM seeks to transform awareness into action by encouraging all Americans to take the necessary steps to ensure that their homes, workplaces and communities are prepared for disasters and emergencies of all kinds.

Preparedness is a shared responsibility; it takes a whole community. This year’s NPM focuses on turning awareness into action by encouraging all individuals and communities District-wide to make an emergency preparedness plan. The District’s Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency (HSEMA) and Serve DC -- the Mayor’s Office on Volunteerism are offering several opportunities for District residents to observe the month.

Serve DC NPM 2011 Events & Activities

As the District’s designated Citizen Corps coordinator, Serve DC engages, trains and mobilizes residents in emergency preparedness and coordinates emergency volunteers and donations. To register for one of Serve DC’s free emergency preparedness trainings or events taking place during NPM, please visit Serve DC's Emergency Preparedness Events & Training site; and for more information on emergency preparedness and National Preparedness Month, please visit FEMA’s Ready Campaign online at

Tribute to Service: Honoring the Victims, Survivors & Heroes of 9/11
Sunday, September 11, 2011; 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Join Serve DC and HandsOn Greater DC Cares for a Tribute to Service, a regional event to commemorate the 10th anniversary of 9/11. The tribute offers the community an opportunity to rekindle the spirit of unity that emerged following the 9/11 attacks, including onsite hands-on service projects, trainings and a volunteer fair featuring more than 30 local nonprofits. Register for the 9/11 Tribute to Service

Commander Ready Kickoff
Friday, September 16, 2011; 1:00 p.m. to 3:00 p.m.
The Commander Ready Program is a specialized component of Serve DC’s Emergency Preparedness Initiative, which is designed to educate and engage youth ages 5-13 in emergency preparedness. Each year, the program kickoff is held in partnership with local government agencies and first responders at a D.C. Public Schools.
*This event is closed to the public; if you are a D.C. Public Schools administrator or educator and wish to get involved, please contact

CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer
Saturday, September 17, 2011; 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
This course is designed to teach those with a duty to act (professional rescuers) the skills needed to respond appropriately to breathing and cardiac emergencies. This includes the use of an automated external defibrillator (AED) to care for a victim of cardiac arrest. Register for CPR/AED for the Professional Rescuer

Community Emergency Response Team (CERT)
Monday, September 26 through Friday, September 30, 2011; 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) training is designed to provide people who live or work in the District with the necessary resources and skills to prepare themselves, their families and communities for any disaster or emergency. Register for CERT

Remote First Aid
Saturday, September 24 & Sunday, September 25, 2011; 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
Remote First Aid is designed to teach scouts, outdoor enthusiasts and others working in remote environments how to respond to emergencies and treat injuries when help may be delayed. Register for Remote First Aid

Spontaneous Volunteer Management
Saturday, September 27, 2011; 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m.
Spontaneous Volunteer Management teaches the fundamentals of volunteer management in addition to best practices for managing spontaneous volunteers during an emergency. Register for Spontaneous Volunteer Management

HSEMA NPM 2011 Events & Activiteis

HSEMA is hosting four exciting and innovative events throughout the month of September that will focus on targeted populations that may not regularly receive important and timely information about emergency preparedness. Please visit to register for one of the following events hosted this year by HSEMA.

Protecting Our Most Vulnerable Residents
What: A forum for service providers to the elderly, those with disabilities, and others vulnerable populations.
When: Wednesday, September 14th, from 9:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m.
Where: The Columbus Club at Union Station

The Faith Community and Emergency Preparedness
What: A forum for Leaders in faith communities
When: Friday, September 23rd, from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Where: The Washington National Cathedral

The Business Community and Emergency Preparedness
What: A forum for the business community
When: Thursday, September 29th from 1:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Where: The International Monetary Fund

The Youth Emergency Preparedness Forum
What: A Forum for Anacostia High School (AHS) Students who are participating in two new programs at AHS in homeland security and law enforcement and emergency medical services.
When: Date and Time TBD (planned for the last week in September)
Where: The D.C. Homeland Security and Emergency Management Agency

Preparation Tips

One of NPM’s key messages is: be prepared in the event an emergency causes you to be self-reliant for three days (72 hours) without utilities and electricity, water service, access to a supermarket or local services, or maybe even without response from police, fire or rescue. Preparing can start with three important steps:

1. Get an emergency supply kit (more: )
2. Make a plan for what to do in an emergency (more:
3. Be informed about emergencies that could happen in your community, and identify sources of information in your community that will be helpful before, during and after an emergency. Sign up to receive emergency text alerts by visiting

An extensive calendar of National Preparedness Month events at which District agencies will make presentations, distribute information or play a significant role can be found on HSEMA’s calendar of events located at or at .